October 31st, 2017

Halloween is one of the most exciting times of the year. Unfortunately, it is also a busy night for hospitals due to child injuries. Following are some of the most common Halloween injuries and tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to avoid them:

1. Pedestrian Injuries

Because pedestrian injuries are the most common injuries to children on Halloween, parents should remind Trick-or-Treaters:

• Stay in a group and communicate where they will be going.
• Remember reflective tape for costumes and trick-or-treat bags.
• Carry a cellphone for quick communication.
• Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
• If no sidewalk is available, walk at the far edge of the roadway facing traffic.
• Never cut across yards or use alleys.
• Only cross the street as a group in established crosswalks. Never cross between parked cars or out driveways.
• Don’t assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing Trick-or-Treaters. Just because one car stops, doesn’t mean others will!
• Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.

2. Eye Injuries

• Choose soft, flexible props when possible.
• If a sword, cane or stick is part of your child’s costume, make sure it is not sharp or long. A child may be easily hurt by these props if he trips.
• Consider covering your props with electrical tape to remove sharp edges.

3. Burn Injuries

• Wear costumes, wigs and accessories that are flame-resistant.
• Consider using a flashlight or glow stick instead of a candle to light your pumpkin.
• Candlelit pumpkins should be kept off the porch and out of the path of Trick-or-Treaters.

4. Home Injuries

• To keep homes safe for visiting Trick-or-Treaters, parents should remove from the porch and front yard anything that could be a trip hazard.
• Parents should check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs.
• Restrain pets so they do not inadvertently jump on or bite a Trick-or-Treater.

While Halloween brings a lot of excitement, candy and sugar into your household, it’s also important to remember safety. Observe some common-sense safety tips, and you’ll be ready to enjoy a fun-filled evening while minimizing risk of a personal injury.